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tv   Tavis Smiley  WHUT  February 11, 2010 10:00pm-10:30pm EST

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tavis: good evening from los angeles. i'm tavis smiley. over the next 40 years the population of the united states is expected to grow by 100 million. while many view that as cause for concern, a thought-provoking new book says the change will actually be beneficial. first up, conversation about that with note the author and futurist joel kotkin. his book is called "the next hundred million." also the legendary producer and director garry marshall stops by, the director behind seminal shows such as "pretty woman" and "happy days" stops by. wire glad you've joined us. announcer: there are so many
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things that wal-mart is looking forward to doing like helping people live better but mostly we're looking forward to building stronger relationships because with your help the best is yet to cument >> nationwide insurance proudly supports tavis smiley. working to improve financial literacy and the empowerment that comes with it. >> nationwide is on your side. >> and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. tavis: joel kotkin say fellow at chapman university here in southern california whose work on social trends has appeared frequently in the wall street journal, "the new york times"
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and "the washington post." his latest book is called "the next hundred million -- america in 2050." joel was just telling me he worked on this stage where we do this show back in 1975. so welcome home. >> good to be back here. jon: the next hundred million -- give me a snapshot. they are -- they're about to do the census. what are we going to do -- look like in 2050? >> well, there are going to be a lot of us. we're going to look a lot different. multiracial, the big trend is going to be mixed race. we're going to be a little bit older but not as old as our competitors will be, europe and japan in particular, and i think we're going to be living in a lot of different places. the cities will be bigger, the suburbs a bit denser and a lot of places in the middle of the country which now have a
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shortage of people have -- will have a lot more. tavis: how can cities get bigger? l.a., new york can get bigger? >> well, they'll get denser. there will be a little bit better land use. there are a lot of old industrialized been abandoned and to be revived. i don't think we'll get a huge increase in the big cities. the suburbs i think will become a little bit denser. people will do more stuff in the suburbs close to where they live. and the big thing, huge percentage of people will be working at home. tavis: will there be any open land mass left? if you're going to add another 100 million people what happens to the relatively few spaces that are open as we speak? >> i think you get a misapprehension about that. this is a big country. lightning a friend of mine from nebraska says, every time someone says we're running out
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of land, i want to push them out on a plane over the middle of nebraska because there is a lot of land. we actually have more open space, more productive space than we did 20, 30 years ago. lots of areas have been turned back to forest. marginal agriculture land has been abandoned. this is a huge country. anyone who has ever driven across it knows how big it is. tavis: if more people are work -- working at homeoes that portened good ings for our ecosystem? >> no question. 36 to 63 million people working at home. this is enormous energy savings. i also think it's important because for society, mothers, fathers being able to work at home, pay more attention to their kids, able to help their kids with homework, able to go tohe soccer games instead of being stuck on the freeway or the train the
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troy: -- tavis: wheyou say we don't be as old as many of our international competitors, unpack that and tell me who that is. >> well, i'm going to get older soon. you need people in the work force contributing to social security. in japan you are talking about 35 to 40% of the population being over 65. the united states will be 20, 25%. more than we have today but nothing like they're going to see in japan. they're going to lack for work force, for the sort of youthful energy that is important to an economy. they're going to lack for markets the tavis: does increasing life expectancy given the technological advances and scientific advances we're making, does that have anything to do with this number being so big? >> absolutely. it's a huge part of it. one of the things you see now is that people are doing great in their 70's and 80's. my mother is 86 and she's still
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sharp as a tack. people will be working longer, into their 60's and 70's. the kaufman foundion did a study recently. the group that's starting the most new companies are in their 50's. tavis: going to your point now, how is this reality going to force us to rethink public policy? by that i mean we have a pretty standard retirement age in this country. how are issues like retirement, etc., etc., medicaid, medicare, social security, public policy wise how do we have to rethink that given the fact that people are going to be living longer and there will be more of us? >> no question the retirement age is going to have to move up, that's one thing, if nothing se just to keep the public budget inalance. and the fact that people live longer, are more city of -- active, more creative later in life, that's a big thing. we're going to have to really focus on economic growth and jobs. even in the last year, we've
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seen -- president obama has really had to shift his gears because he really understands that you have to create about 125,000 jobs a month, and we're not doing that right now. tavis: yeah. i want to talk in a moment about the fact that we're going to be a more interracial group. first i want to break this down by group if i can. i watch these census trends specifically where the african-american community is concerned. we've known for some time the black folk are slowing down on having babies and the hispanics are outpacing everybody in terms of burgeoning growth. how will groups fare in 2050? >> let's start with african-americans. they're going to become a more diverse group. more people from africa, like the president himself. people from the caribbean. africans from south america. a more diverse african-american community. it's not going to be an african-american community
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where everybody has the same sort of historical lineage. tavis: we ain't all going to be from mississippi and georgia, in other words? >> exactly. and with hispanics also, they're coming from all sorts of countries. the same thing in the asian community and with the anglo community. more and more people from different places. more and more mixtures of kinds of people than we've ever seen about. tavis: how does that connect to the fact that we then become a more interracial society? >> i define the united states as a multiracial superpower. it will be the first society in the world to really be a multiracial country on a large scale and in incredible diversity. one out of five by 2050 may be of more than one racial background. certainly we already see in the surveys tremendous changes in views, fr instance, about interracial marriage. if you compare millennials,
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young people now with people over 65 you go from about 40% who favor interracial marriage or dating to about 90%. so huge changes. i think this positions america in a way for world leadership different than in the past but in a very compelling way. tavis: i was a collegiate debater. you have to learn how to be proficient on both sides of the question. i could take in a debate with you th affirmative side of either one of these debates, which is in defense of diversity or in defense of home 0 againate for sosa -- homogeneity for societies the some might be more homogenous like japan or china. what's the advantage to being diverse? >> i think over time diversity wins. i think over time a society that has different inputs, different creative inputs from different cultures will
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generally be stronger than one that is homo genius. -- homogenous. the great cities of the world that have impacted our culture and history have very often been very diverse places open to different societies. so i think that over time this is going to be a great strength for the united states. it's going to not be easy. but i think people fundamentally are looking at a very different society in 2050 and i think in many ways a society that will be positioned for global leadership in a way that we can't quite imagine. tavis: barak obama, president obama now, would be exhibit a. i'm not sure how far we can drill down and read into that but tell me how you think our society is going to be able to deal with the greafert -- greater interracial nature? >> i think the issue of class is the issue of the 21st
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century, whereas race was the issue of the 20th. if we have a growing deme, these -- economy, these racial tensions will be much le but if there is a scarcity of jobs and then people are angry about immigrants or some group getting something, it's going to be a much more hostile environment. so economic growth is at the absolute center of making society work. tavis: finally, are you hopeful about 2050 or scared out of your mind about 2050? >> i'm hopeful about it. i have two young girls. i tried with this book to say here's a positive vision of the american future. now go get it. tavis: joel kotkin's book is called "the next hundred million -- america in 2050." up next, a conversation with famed hollywood director and producer garry marshall. stay with us. please welcome garry marshall to this program. the legendary writer, producer,
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and director is responsible for seminal pieces of american popular culture like "happy days," "the odd couple," "laverne and shirley," and the highest grossing romantic comedy of all time, i watch it every other night i think, "pretty woman". he is once again directing a much anticipated romantic comedy. "valentine's day." it opens this weekend around the country. here now some scenes. >> valentine's day, it comes every year whether you like it or not the it's the day when your love life is put on display. >> i'd like to send a dozen of those to the best girl in my hooment >> ok. your wife? >> i'm 17 years old the >> sorry. didn't realize. >> ok. i'm going to go now. >> it's valentine's day today? >> hello. it's on monday.
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valentine's day always falls on a thursday. >> use your head. that's thanksgiving. >> it can be complicated. >> alex and i will have sex today. >> love can't be planned. >> at the independent of the day it's all about love. >> so how do you guys feel about each other? >> i totally love him president >> i'm crazy about her. tavis: garry marshall, this cast, this cast, this cast. everybody in this town is in this movie except for brian, my stage manager and me. >> that's right. they were close! tavis: what a great cast we have here. >> well, it's most of s.a.g. but what the heck, they all wanted to work together and we had a ral real good time. love and valentine's day, it goes together. norv ever did valentine's day. now i'll be known as the holiday director. arbor day, easter. tavis: is it fun to have that
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caliber on the set or is there, between the two of us, a real challenge trying to herd all that? >> oh, they're not hard to herd creatively but to get them there, they're all on other jobs, so logistically it's quite challenging. but whoever was there it, that's what i did. and one of the best love stories in the piece is shirley maclaine and hector elizondo. a senior love story. you know, seniors fall in love too. i don't want to shock you. i'm a senior. but they don't push that as much as they do all the young kids. but it's all ages. multiage. tavis: yeah. i wonder whether or not it's easier to your point now seriously to sell the story -- not to sell, to tell the story of kronologically gifted love, if i put it that wa way?
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is it ead -- easier to tell the story of chronologically gifted love in the broader setting of this movie than just stetting out to do that movie on its own? would a love story about shirley mack -- maclaine and hector elizondo sell in this town today? >> i don't think so. you kind of stop at meryl streep. good place. but no, i at this think a story like that would work if a few young people were in it too. in this case they have down to 19. taylor swift, taylor lautner. we have a lot of taylors. then we go up to we don't say what age but the senior love story is really very interesting it probably only shirley maclaine could have played it. it takes place in a cemetery. no pun intended, it just happens to take place there. i just wish they would push the
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senior elements too. there's noge thing. kids fall in love. crushes. it's all over. a lot of people want to be enlightened. what better subject, get some enlightenment about love. but i had great actors and they delivered. other than funny you want to have some emotion and i think the key to a love story is have all the fun, the jokes, but when you get near the end see if you can eliminate the dialogue and just do it with pictures. it works out if you have good music. tavis: to your point about a love story. i think in music, i recall this conversation one day with stevie wonder, this great artist who has tackled the subject of love on album after album, song after song. he is an icon because he always finds a new way to wrestle with this thi called love, he minds -- finds a new way to say it. is the concept of love
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inexhaustible in film as it is in music? >> i think it is. many we have seven or eight angles usually and that's all right. i do one. but in this one, i had so many stories we could keep the pace going. the hardest was casting couples. many you have to say who would she go with? >> a lot of the stars just love themselves >> yes, they do. but the one thing the audience understands is chemistry. they like variations but you have to a -- have chemistry. we worked very hard to get that right. tavis: because you have by your own admission so many love stories being told in this film what's the danger or the challenge that a director-writer-producer has in not losing the audience because the story has too many moving parts to it? does that make sense? >> yes. tavis: what's the trick to do
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that? >> the trick is to do it again and again and again so you get the structure right. but what usually happens is this love story, like this actor, better than this one. but there's all stars here, oscar winners looking in each other's eyes. so no matter where you went i think the audience was interested. tavis: this is an inside baseball question but i'm always curious as to people's process if i walked on this set any day and didn't know who was showing up it might be challenging. i like to do my research. i think i could pull it off by -- but i like to know that garry marshall is coming today. >> yes. tavis: to your point, filming a movie like this and you don't know which star with -- can make it to film that day, as a director how do you do this? >> you think it's a baseball question, you don't know who's going to pitch?
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well, i'll answer in a baseball way. in baseball maybe only you and i know there's a thing called the mendoza line. mario mendoza batted .201, .202. if you bat lower than that, you're out of the big leagues. my whole process is to stay in the big leagues. i like it there. they have trailers and food trays. i try so hard to stay above the mendoza line so no matter who shows up, i know i have to stay above it. and such talented people showed up in this film that it was a little easier. tavis: let me ask you to set your modesty aside for just a second. how do you in this storied career believe, think, feel, that you have been able to stay above the mendoza line throughout the overwhelming part of your career? >> well, i've always d good people around me. the same sin eam tographer who
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shot "pretty woman," chuck minceky, shot this. he makes girls look very, very beautiful. you can't believe all the hype, "oh, he's a legendary director." i weant -- went to new york recently. i wanted to go to marty short's show. i said can i come on pens -- wednesday night, get me tickets? the guy said it will be great, marty calls a celebrity out of the audience. you can be it. i said "i'm sure you can find a bigger celebrity than me." he said, "not on a wednesday." that's where i am. i always say i'm a wednesday celebrity. jay leno, always. wednesday night. tavis: when i mentioned -- opened the show, i wasn't teasing, all my friends know and fans do because over the years i've been sent coims -- copies of "pretty woman." i have a closet of like 200
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copies of "pretty woman" now. i watch this movie all the time. i love it. is there -- crazy question -- is there ever a danger in a movie being seen too many times with too great a frequency? could -- do we lose the pressuriation for it? because "pretty woman" is on some channel every day. i don't have to pull out my video copy. i just flip the channel and i'm going to catch it somewhere. is there something wrong with this? >> no, i think there are certain films, not just mine, but "pretty woman" is one, i hear from people, women particularly, who say i watch it and i feel good at the end. that's what i try to get. we have some very emotional moments. every love affair does not work out in "valentine's day" but i try to end with hope and make you feel good at the end and that's why i think people watch again. i don't think it loses anything. as soon as you watch it and you feel bad, don't watch it any more. it's run its course.
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but mostly if you feel good about it, it's good to watch it much. people come to me. a big executive who i was trying to kwame press -- to impress, before i spoke, said "i recorded the sound track of "pretty woman" and all the dialogue and i used to play it on my ear phones in college all through my classes." i didn't want to say, well, did you graduate? but i was flattered. tavis: it's a great sound track on that film though. has that always been important to you to do films, not that every film has to do this, but has it always been important to make films that, to your point, make people feel good? >> that's what i chose do. i dedicated more or less my life to making people laugh and smile. i don't do tears from sadness, i do them from joy. that's what i like doing. i tried once blowing something up and this and that and i've
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done the other sister and frankie and johnny, a little more seriouside but i always try to do a love story and then make you feel good at the end. and it's always balances. you mentioned "pretty woman," so many times. the weekend it came out it went all over the place. i was 0-4 in my softball game. they evened it out. i couldn't hit anything th day. but i was a big hit so i play a lot of sports to even life out. tavis: you're still playing softball in a senior league? >> hector elizondo, playing the senior league. you've got to be over 55. if you get a double you take a nap. it's good that way. somebody asked me what do you get if you win the championship? they give you free lipitor. made it up. there's no trophy the tavis: you still enjoy doing this? >> i pitch now. i played short and second but i
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can't bend down so good. so i'm a pitcher. i pitch this thursday if it doesn't rain. got to keep going. then you don't mind about -- when the bases are loaded and you may walk the guy you don't worry what your grosses were. balances your life. tavis: "valentine's day" is the new film. if it's anything like the other stuff that garry marshall has done it will be something i'll be watching every other night as well. that's our show for tonight. catch me on the weekends on p.r.i., public radio international. access our webcast through the web site at i'll see you next time. until then, thanks for watching, and as always, keep the faith. ♪ pretty woman, yeah, yeah, yeah ♪ ♪ pretty woman look my way ♪ pretty woman, say you'll stay ♪ >> my i help you? >> no, thank you. >> hi. do you remember me? >> no. i'm sorry.
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i. >> i was in here yesterday. you wouldn't wait on me. you work on commission, right? >> emmitt >>ig mistake. big. huge. i have to go shopping now. ♪ pretty woman, don't walk on by ♪ ♪ pretty woman, don't make me cry ♪ ♪ pretty woman ♪ don't walk away ♪ >> for more information on today's show, visit tavis smiley at the tavis: join me next time for a conversation with former al gore speechwriter daniel pink on his latest best-seller, drive. that's next time. we'll see you then. >> there are so many things that wal-mart is looking forward to doing, like helping people live better but mostly we're looking forward to helping build stronger communities and relationships because with your help the best is yet to come. >> nationwide insurance proudly
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supports tavis smiley. tavis and nationwide insurance. working to improve financial literacy and the empowerment that comes with it. ♪ nationwide is on your side. ♪ >> and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. captioned by the national captioning institute
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